The Namban Trade

Merchants and Missionaries in 16th and 17th Century Japan


Author: Mihoko Oka
Winner of the prize "Fundação Oriente – Embaixador João de Deus Ramos" of the Academia de Marinha 2021

This book attempts to depict certain aspects of the Portuguese trade in East Asia in the 16th and 17th centuries by analyzing the activities of the merchants and Christian missionaries involved. It also discusses the response of the Japanese regime in handling the systemic changes that took place in the Asian seas. Consequently, it explains how Jesuit missionaries forged close ties with local merchants from the start of their activities in East Asian waters, and there is no doubt that the propagation of Christianity in Japan was a result of their cooperation. The author of this book attempted to combine the essence of previous studies by Japanese and western scholars and added several new findings from analyses of original Japanese and European language documents.

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Mihoko Oka, Ph.D. (1974), the University of Tokyo, is Associate Professor of the Historiographical Institute and the Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies. She has published monographs, translations, edited volumes and many articles regarding Japanese history in the global context, including A Maritime History of East Asia (Kyoto University Press, 2019 (co-edited with Masashi Haneda).
All interested in the Japanese history, and especially in the global context.